By Robert Mann
For those of you not following the aftermath of U.S. Rep. Rodney Alexander‘s recent resignation announcement, here’s a helpful recap provided in an editorial in Sunday’s Alexandria Town Talk:
• Republican [state Rep.] Neil Riser’s campaign was registered with the state on July 7.
• Republican Rep. [Rodney] Alexander announced his resignation a month later, on Aug. 6.
• And Republican Gov. Bobby Jindal announced the next day, on Aug. 7, that Alexander would become head of the Louisiana Department of Veterans Affairs, effective Sept. 30.
For those who like to read between the lines, there is this from Jindal’s announcement: “Congressman Alexander has agreed to step down from his position in Congress and serve as secretary of the department.”
“Agreed to step down”? With whom did Alexander agree on the question of whether he would resign his congressional seat? The answer appears to be, of course, Jindal.
Riser, a funeral home owner from Columbia, is one of several candidates in the election set by Jindal for Oct. 19. He is, however, the only one who had advance word of Alexander’s impending resignation in an apparent back-room deal orchestrated by Jindal. Riser is the only candidate who had time to build a campaign organization, including creation of a web site. Jindal’s top political aide, Timmy Teppell, is said to be working for Riser’s campaign.
“It looks like they tried to rig this election,” said Republican state Rep. Jay Morris, R-Monroe, who is also running for the “open” seat. “I didn’t think this kind of thing was supposed to happen in our country.”
Jindal, of course, is the same person who campaigned for office in 2007 by attacking Louisiana’s sordid history of political hijinks.
“For too long, our state has had the reputation of being a place where who you know is more important than what you know,” Jindal said in this campaign document. “This negative perception has continuously prevented our state from attracting the type of business investment that will truly help move Louisiana forward.”
My guess is that Riser — to quote Duck Dynasty’s Phil Robertson — is happy, happy, happy to know Jindal, otherwise he wouldn’t be about to occupy a U.S. House seat in a shady deal foisted upon the voters.
Jindal and his GOP compatriots love to rail against election fraud. In their world, someone is always trying to steal an election by voting without proper identification, even though it’s almost impossible to find examples of elections that were actually stolen in such a manner.
But if you want to watch some old-fashioned election stealing, Louisiana-style, take a good long look at what Jindal, Riser and Alexander have cooked up in the 5th congressional district.
To quote the Town Talk editorial: “If this feels a lot like someone has stolen your vote, well, let’s just say you’re not alone.”
- Monroe lawmaker says he’s running for 5th District (fresnobee.com)
- LA-5: Backroom Deal Clears Field for Riser (dailykingfish.com)
- UPDATE: GOP Rep Confirms Backroom Deal Clears Field for Riser in LA-5 (dailykingfish.com)
- Willie Robertson of ‘Duck Dynasty’ says he won’t run for Congress (nydailynews.com)
- Is Jindal Collapsing? (2016elephantrace.wordpress.com)